It’s important for a church to have a web presence. This makes it easier to inform your congregation of upcoming events and provide visitors and members with the information they request frequently: the church’s address, order of services, phone numbers, pastor or special programs.
Building a church website is much like creating any website, but with some peculiarities. It’s a delicate task that requires understanding the character of the church as a whole. For this very reason many churches decide to build their websites themselves, rather than hire a web agency. Thankfully, there are many code-free, Do-It-Yourself options out there.
Church website builders
In general, church website builders are a great option, if you plan to create a central web hub for your church, as they provide many specially developed, church-specific features that make it easy to present your faith. Specifically, they offer a great selection of church-themed templates, audio- and video streaming, user content permissions, Bible searches, online donations, prayer requests, calendar, announcements, quick surveys and more.
These features are undoubtedly, really handy. However, when it comes to pricing, it appears that church site builders are much more expensive than their versatile counterparts. On the average, it costs about $40-80/mo to use a specialized church site builder, while you can sign up to a non-specialized one for only $6-$15/mo.
Versatile site builders
In my opinion, versatile website builders offer enough features to build a beautiful church website. They may not offer such widgets as ‘Online Donations’ and ‘prayer request’, but it doesn’t mean you can’t add these manually (or through editing included widgets). For example, you can customize your PayPal button to make it the Donation button or transform your guestbook into the ‘prayer request’ page.
It all depends on what you really need and how in-depth you plan to customize your website. If you want a fully-loaded church website with Bible search and prayer requests, and you’re willing to pay about $60/mo for your website, then specialized site builders are probably the best solution for you.
However, don’t get caught up in the “more is better” mentality, unless you really need it. I’ve tested more than fifty DIY site builders and I can safely say that these work for church websites, too 🙂 .
Have you had success using a specialized church site builder? Tell your story in the comments!